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Christian History

Today in Christian History

April 18

April 18, 1161: Theobald, Archbishop of Canterbury, dies. He repeatedly quarreled with his superiors about church appointments and other political questions, but he the influential French abbot Bernard of Clairvaux supported him. Theobald helped strengthen the English church and build the career of Thomas Becket, whom he recommended as chancellor to England's newly crowned King Henry.

April 18, 1587: English Protestant historian John Foxe, author of Actes and Monuments of Matters Happenning to the Church (the shorter version is now known as Foxe's Book of Martyrs), dies at age 71 (see issue 72: How We Got Our History).

April 18, 1874: Having died nearly a year earlier (May 1, 1873) in what is now northern Zambia, missionary-explorer David Livingstone (whose remains had been brought, as his tombstone reads, "by faithful hands over land and sea") is interred in London's Westminster Abbey (see issue 56: David Livingstone).

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June 21, 1607: English settlers found the first Anglican (later Episcopalian) parish in America at Jamestown, Virginia.

June 21, 1892: Reinhold Niebuhr, American neo-orthodox theologian and ethicist, is born. He rejected some of the optimism of Christian liberalism, arguing for origional sin and for a prophetic, culture-challenging Christianity, but his liberal views on politics, the Bible, and the nature of Christ (he believed Jesus was a moral exemplar, but not fully God) distanced him from conservatives. ...

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